♫ Lonely Teardrops ♫

Last night I played Nightshift, a tribute to Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson, both of whom died in 1984.  I’ve played most of Marvin Gaye’s songs at least once in the nearly 3 years I’ve been doing these music posts, but have only played one by Jackie Wilson, (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher.  So tonight, I’d like to remedy that by playing Jackie’s second most popular song, Lonely Teardrops.

Released in 1959, this was written by the Detroit songwriting team who wrote Wilson’s first several hits – the duo of Tyran Carlo (the pen name of Wilson’s cousin Roquel Davis) and a pre-Motown Berry Gordy Jr., along with Gwen Gordy Fuqua, one of Berry Gordy’s four sisters.  They co-wrote eight other songs for Wilson. At the time, Gordy was a struggling songwriter, but this song – his first Top-10 hit as a songwriter – gave him the confidence to rent a building in Detroit and start the Tamla label, which would become Motown.

Many artists have covered this, including Jose Feliciano, teen idol pop singer Brian Hyland and Michael Jackson.  I didn’t listen to any of the other versions, for I’m quite satisfied with the original in this case (plus I’m tired and longing for my bed).

In September 1975, while performing at the Latin Casino in New Jersey, Wilson collapsed from a heart attack and a stroke right in the middle of this song. He never recovered and remained in a coma for eight more years; he was hospitalized until his death on January 21, 1984 (age 49). In tragic irony, the last words he sung before collapsing were “My heart is crying.” The audience at first thought that his fall was part of the act and they started applauding and cheering. It became evident that something was wrong when about half a minute later, he hadn’t moved. The excitement instantly turned into confusion and shock as attempts to revive Jackie on the stage were to no avail.

As far as I can tell, the song only charted in the U.S. (#7), and I’m not sure why, unless Jackie Wilson was just still too much an unknown.

Lonely Teardrops
Jackie Wilson

My heart is crying, crying
Lonely teardrops
My pillow’s never dry of lonely teardrops
Come home, come home
Just say you will, say you will
(Say you will) say you will (say you will)
Hey, hey (say you will)
My heart is crying, crying

Lonely teardrops
My pillow’s never dry of lonely teardrops
Come home, come home
Just say you will, say you will
(Say you will) say you will, (say you will)
Hey, hey (say you will)

Just give me another chance for our romance
Come on and tell me that one day you’ll return
‘Cause, every day that you’ve been gone away
You know my heart does nothing but burn, crying

Lonely teardrops
My pillow’s never dry of lonely teardrops
Come home, come home
Just say you will, say you will
(Say you will) say you will, (say you will)
Hey, hey (say you will)
Say it right now, baby
(Say you will) come on, come on
(Say you will) say that you
Say it right now, baby
(Say you will) come on, come on
(Say you will) hey come on

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Berry Jr Gordy / Gwendolyn Gordy Fuqua / Tyran Carlo
Lonely Teardrops lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

13 thoughts on “♫ Lonely Teardrops ♫

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